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Tattoo artist shot, paralyzed

Gangster shoots Gresham man twice in back for not finishing tattoo


A Gresham man who refused to finish a gang member’s tattoo may never walk again after the client shot him twice in the back.

Russell Alan Clemo, 28, of outer Southeast Portland is being held on $505,000 bail on allegations of attempted murder, first-degree assault and unlawful use of a weapon.Russell Alan Clemo

It all began at 2:22 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31, when Gresham police responded to a report of gunshots fired at an apartment in the 100 block of Northeast 181st Avenue. The resident — identified as 24-year-old Jordan Peck — told police he had begun to give a neck tattoo to a man but Peck refused to finish it and the client shot him, according to court documents.

Police noticed two bullet holes in Peck’s back, as well as a .38-caliber revolver. Judging from empty casings in the gun and the recovery of five spent bullets at the scene, police believe all six bullets were fired.

The victim was taken to an area hospital.

He had very limited information on the suspect and wasn't even sure of his first name, but thought it was Kevin or Russ. He also told police the suspect was a member of a particular gang and provided a description of the shooter, as did a woman in the apartment at the time of the shooting who saw the suspect running out of the apartment.

Gresham Detective Tim Snider contacted Multnomah County Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Burkeen, who served on the East Metro Gang Enforcement Team, and relayed the suspect description and gang affiliation.

Burkeen said he knew of a man named Russell Clemo who belonged to the same gang, which is known for its white supremacist beliefs, and found a photo of the man to show the detective.

The man in the photos matched the physical description of the suspect. Both the victim and other witnesses identified Clemo as the gunman.

Snider went to Clemo’s home in the 13900 block of Southeast Mill Street and contacted the man just past noon on Sunday, Sept. 2.

Clemo had an unfinished tattoo on the side of his neck.

Snider arrested him.

There detectives learned that the gunshots paralyzed the man from the waist down and he will never walk again.

Detectives believe Clemo was high on methamphetamine at the time of the shooting, said Sgt. Claudio Grandjean, Gresham police spokesman.